When great people do or say terrible things

Justifying the unjustifiable

Why do so many people believe that it is a Torah requirement to justify unjustifiable behavior when it is carried out by great people?

The Gemoro I know says “In a situation where there is Chillul Hashem, we do not show respect for a teacher.” – in other words, one does not refrain from criticizing one’s own Rabbi, if Chilul Hashem is involved, even if it seems disrespectful. [Brachos 19b]

It also tells us that the obligation to rebuke one’s neighbor applies even to a student in front of his Rabbi [B.M. 31a]-

I have always asked my students to apply this halocho to me, and they have usually obliged!

obviously humility is needed when criticizing those greater than oneself, but refraining from doing so, or even worse, justifying actions of theirs that are clearly wrong, is not the Torah way- its the way of a different religion

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